President Obama dismissed concerns over last week’s disastrous jobs report and warnings of a possible double-dip recession during a joint White House press conference with German Chancellor Angela Merkel Tuesday.
The president suggested the figures―which showed an increase in the national jobless rate rising 9.0 to 9.1 percent in May and the average length of unemployment reaching a record high of nearly 40 weeks―were an anomaly. “Economic data which in better times would go without comment now makes people wonder are we going to go back to a terrible crisis,” he complained.
“We are going to have some days when things aren’t going as well as we like,” he said, but claimed the country nonetheless was in a “recovery,” pointing to the creation of two million jobs by the private sector and the rebound of the US auto industry.
Looking at Merkel―whose government is currently demanding brutal austerity from Greek workers in return for a EU bailout―the president acknowledged, “People on both sides of the Atlantic are understandably frustrated with the ups and downs of the world economy. But we try not to look at the day-to-day markets and headlines. Our task is not to panic. Not to overreact.”
So, assignment for tonight, just focus on that. Doing so will make you more experienced at economics than anyone at the White House.
Here's C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:"